After attending a professional development seminar hosted by Central Michigan University, Eastern Michigan University, Kettering University, and Michigan State University, LEAP’s College Counseling Team wanted to provide background information on each.  Who knows? One of these schools may be your perfect FIT!

Central Michigan University:

Located in Mount Pleasant, Michigan (2 ½ hours from Detroit), Central Michigan University is a 4-year, public university.  Additionally, CMU offers Michigan’s first undergraduate neuroscience degree program, which was awarded the 2013 Undergraduate Program of the Year by the Society for Neuroscience.  With 20,415 undergraduate students, CMU’s average incoming freshman has a 3.33 GPA and a 23+ ACT/1140+ SAT. The freshman retention rate is 79%.

Out-of-State Cost of Attendance stands at $35,014 a year (net price totals $14, 204)—the tenth least expensive of Michigan Public Universities; non-Michigan students with a 2.75 GPA are automatically awarded in-state tuition.

CMU offers several merit-based scholarships and awards ranging from $2,000 annually to full tuition; 60% of incoming freshmen receive some sort of merit-based aid, and awards are stackable.

Eastern Michigan University:

Located in Ypsilanti, Michigan (10 minutes from Ann Arbor), EMU is a 4-year, public university. With almost 18,000 undergraduate students; EMU has been named the “Best Midwestern College” for 14 years by the Princeton Review.  EMU’s average incoming freshman boasts a GPA of 3.26 and a 22 on the ACT; 74% of students continue their matriculation past freshman year.

Out-of-state cost of attendance stands at approximately $37,000 for full-time (20 credit hours) undergraduates, but students boasting a 2.75 GPA and 20+ ACT/1020+ SAT qualify for in-state tuition via the National Scholars Program, with cost of attendance totaling $18,579 for full-time (15 credit hours) students.   Net price averages $12,782.  EMU offers merit-based awards, both competitive as well as automatic consideration, based on GPA and test scores. These scholarships range from $2,000 to full tuition.

Kettering University:

Located in Flint, Michigan (students DON’T drink the Flint City water!), KU is a 4-year, private, not-for-profit university catering to STEM students who want a rigorous co-op program.  With 14 STEM-based degree programs and 15 specialties and concentrations, Kettering University has been named 10th nationally by CNN Money for return on investment.  A smaller school of 2,252 undergraduates, Kettering’s student to faculty ratio stands at 14:1, with lab courses capped at 12.

Admission is based on either a recalculation of GPA to 4.0 scale or a GPA based on math, science, and English only.  Kettering super scores the ACT and SAT.  Applicants must have a 3.0 GPA—based on recalculations— (average 3.64) and a 24+ ACT/ 1160+ SAT (average super score of 27 ACT or 1241 SAT)—to qualify for admission.

Kettering’s cost of attendance sits at a little under $49,000 with a fixed-rate guarantee (net price of $34,825), but Kettering’s unique co-op program—starting freshman year—offers students the opportunity to make $10,00 – $15,000 in yearly income to offset costs.  Merit awards are based on automatic consideration, and competitive scholarships range from $3,000 to $16,000; the average student is awarded $14,000 per-year.  With the distinction of the #1 return on investment in Michigan and #14 on 20-year return on investment in the nation, Kettering also ranks #1 in Midwest Colleges for Career Preparation (2016).  Graduates’ average salary is $64,000 with a 98% job placement rate.

Kettering’s co-op program splits the university’s student body into two groups, and each group alternates between 11-week academic and 12-week work terms. Students typically graduate in 4 ½ years, and the freshman retention rate stands at 93%. Student life, including a strong Greek system as well as numerous clubs and organizations, contributes to continued matriculation.

MSUMichigan State University:

Located in East Lansing (1 ½ hours from Detroit), MSU is a 4-year, public university.  Ranking in the top 10 for international student enrollment and study abroad, MSU offers 275+ programs on seven continents.  With just over 39,000 undergraduate students on campus, Michigan State’s student to faculty ratio stands at 17:1, and 92% of freshmen continue their matriculation to sophomore year.

The average student for the class of 2016 entered with a 3.4 – 3.6 GPA and a 24 – 28 ACT score.  Cost of attendance for out-of-state students totals at $47,726, but 63% of students receive need-based, merit, and work-based aid, equating to a net price of $14,601. MSU offers more than 7 merit-based scholarships, ranging between $750 to $23,000 annually, and all student applicants are automatically considered: maximum consideration is given to students applying prior to November 1st.

While many disregard out-of-state schools due to price, keeping an open mind is important to not miss what could be your best fit.  Many schools, including the four mentioned, just might offer the most “bang for your buck”, even though they aren’t in your home state.  Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Kettering, and Michigan State all offer a myriad of ways to make each more affordable. Don’t let COA scare you from investigating these, and other, out-of-state colleges. Schedule a tour at a school of interest—regardless of location– and see what you think!